Explore fun things to do for less in St James’s neighbourhood
There’s plenty to do in St James’s without breaking the bank… Spend a budget-conscious day out with us and give your wallet a well-deserved break.
Gear up for a sweat session
Kick-start your day with an endorphin rush and get your steps in with a run or walk around the 1.3-mile radius of St James’s Park. Take in sweeping views of London, as the picturesque Buckingham Palace, London Eye, resident pelicans, historic Duck Island Cottage and rows of spring blooms make up the backdrop. Or, explore Gymshark’s experiential flagship in neighbouring Regent Street that plays host to 30 free classes weekly, offering yin yoga, body conditioning, strengthening sessions alongside wellness-driven talks.
Explore art in the area
Spend the rest of the morning soaking up the wide range of free art and culture, with a choice of over 77 galleries in St James’s. From the rotation of free art exhibitions at St James’s Market Pavilion to the unmissable seasonal exhibitions at Royal Academy of Arts – there’s always an art gallery waiting to be explored. Why not visit the newly opened, Centre for British Photography, championing spectacular British photography in all its glory. Continue the art trail and head onto discover more artistic canvases at Messum’s, White Cube, Cristea Roberts Gallery and more. Explore the full list of St James’s galleries.
Picnics in the park
Fancy a mid-day treat? Why not park up on a bench or blanket within the serene surroundings of St James’s Park with a fresh, home-made picnic. Or pick up sweet treats and pastries from Ole & Steen or Redemption Roasters to devour on the green spaces of the park. If you’d like to step your picnic up a notch, indulge in a tin of tea cakes from Fortnum & Mason’s, a sandwich from The Gentlemen Baristas’ deli selections, hydrate with a juice from Rose Bakery or a brew from quaint Compane, new to Princes Arcade – all great, yet economical accompaniments to your picnic.
Serene surroundings for solitude
Take a moment to yourself with a visit to The London Library and engross yourself in its expansive collection of books. Or perch yourself atop the benches in St James’s Churchyard for some quiet time in meditation, listening to a podcast or simply people-watching. If the weather doesn’t permit, settle down at nearby Maison Assouline’s Swans Bar with a pot of tea and travel the world through its many vibrant travel coffee table books.
Marvel at the theatricals
Spend the rest of the day catching entertaining, intelligent drama in the West End for a fraction of the price. Jermyn Street Theatre offers 10 tickets daily for £10 when booked after 12 noon on the day of the performance by phoning its box office. Gather your friends for an evening of theatre and discover exceptional independent dramas in the West End’s smallest producing theatre. Why not visit Waterstone’s hidden gem, the 5th View Bar for some 2-for-1 cocktails pre-theatre to set yourselves up for the rest of the night.
Flex your photography muscles
After seeking inspiration from your visit to the Centre for British Photography, have a play with photography yourself. St James’s is filled with an abundance of visually aesthetic window displays, historic British architecture and striking sights that create the perfect frames. Snap a shot with the statue of Beau Brummell, the historic Fortnum & Mason building, the Eros statue at Piccadilly Circus, the resident pelicans and blue bridge in St James’s Park… St James’s is your oyster. We love to see your creativity shine, don’t forget to tag @StJamesLondon on Instagram to be in the chance to feature in our #SundaySights series.